Student Snippets A Window Into The Daily Life & Thoughts of SLIS Students

Reader’s Advisory

So Many Books, So Little Time

I have always prided myself on being well-read. I imagine most people considering a career in the library profession feel similarly. Starting the GSLIS program at Simmons has led me to question whether I really am the great reader I have always claimed to be. Sometimes it feels like all of my classmates are better readers than me. One of my favorite classes this semester is Young Adult (YA) Literature with Professor Melanie Kimball. I love learning about working with young adults but this course is certainly putting my reading skills to the test. Along with professional development readings targeted towards young adult librarians, we are also required to read two or three YA books per week! So far I have enjoyed the challenge of keeping up with all of the readings but my speed and efficiency are being put to the test. Although I have moments of insecurity because I do not feel as well-read as some of my classmates, one assignment allowed me to gain some perspective by making me spend time reflecting…


All but the best laid book plans…

A few posts ago you may or may not recall my assertion that what GSLIS students should be doing during their break was to take some time to professionally develop. Well develop I did, but in the exact opposite way I intended. You see, over the break I read prolifically (for me, anyway). I read books I had been dying to take home and snuggle with. I read when I woke up every day. I read after my luxurious mid-morning naps. I read next to my family’s Christmas tree with a cup of tea in hand. ‘Twas glorious! Now, while this wasn’t strictly professional reading. I think it’s SO VERY important for librarians, who have very little time for pleasure reading (BIG misconception about the profession in my opinion), to read their hearts out. To read until their eyeballs pop right out of their sockets. Readers advisory is a skill to be honed and the only real way to get anything done on that front is to read and share. This, I have done. This,…


A Book by Any Other Name

Yesterday was a busy day at my local library.  A recent phone call from a patron began with, “I can’t believe you have only one copy of this book…”  He wasn’t talking about the copy on our shelves, but about our virtual e-collection that we share with other libraries in our state (New Hampshire).   The discussion turned to an explanation about library costs for eBooks versus what a patron might pay on Amazon for a Kindle download, as well as a referral to other sources of free eBooks (such as Project Gutenberg and Amazon’s Lending Library), and lastly, of course, a brief lesson on how to search only for available titles one can read right now on the state’s downloadable eBook consortium. This call was followed by a visiting patron, Nook in hand, who needed help to access the downloadable collection. Behind her stood a patron who wanted to download an audiobook to her iPhone…and a young lady of 12 with her new Kindle Fire… and a mom, with a stack of thirty picture books….


‘Tis the Season to be Reading!

Indeed! Classes are over. Perhaps  you have a vacation of sorts on the horizon. Whatever shall you do?  Well, I’ll tell you what I’ll be doing. I will be doing some professional development. Wait! It’s not as boring as it sounds. Here’s my rationale: I’m going to a wonderful school that costs a lot of money. I’m not fully taking advantage of everything the school/faculty/facilities have to offer. I’m going to get on that. Here’s a holiday list of books to read about the library profession, libguides to peruse, and people to bug about how to really get the most out of your Simmons Education. Also, I’ve included a fun list of holiday reads. What’s Christmas without a giggle or two 🙂 1) The Librarian’s Guide to Writing for Publication by Rachel Singer Gordon I’m loving this book that reminds every librarian, and librarian to be, that it’s important to contribute to the field of library science scholarship. Gordon quells the reader’s fears, by putting forth a baby step approach to writing about a field…


Dude…that’s hot

Today is exam day at my school, so the library is chillingly quiet. Not a creature is stirring…not even the cockroaches we sometimes find under the desk. EW! In celebration of this peaceful respite from the sound and the fury my colleagues and I are catching up on wonderful YA blogs/excellent blogs/pinterest/goodreads quizzes. It really feels like a two hour holiday. The following blog post is a snapshot of 12 of the “hottest” and most talented male authors on the YA scene today. Marginalized by their gender, they’re exerting their manliness and proving that the YA realm isn’t just a game played by lady writers. It’s pretty hilarious. Enjoy! The Dudes of YA, a “Lit-Erotic” Photo Spread    


Reader’s Advisory

One of the hot topics in reference is reader’s advisory. It’s the reason many people engage in reference interactions with librarians, but it’s often hard to narrow in on exactly what a patron liked about a particular book.  And for me at least, when a patron admits that they don’t enjoy reading or actively dislikes it, I feel a lot of pressure to deliver.  I have long felt that there is a book out there for each person, it’s just a question of matching the two together.  But doing that can be a complicated, frustrating, and sometimes disheartening experience.   If I sound down, it’s because I’ve just handled two reader’s advisory interactions which went less well than I would have hoped.  In the first case, I had a freshman who “hates reading” looking for a short, funny book, but not one that would make her feel dumb (so graphic novels were out), no vampires (“read my lips: N-O, NO!”), no romances, no chick-lit books, nothing I could suggest caught her interest. “You know who’s…